Friday, June 16, 2017

Book: Jane Mayer's "Dark Money"

After reading a light, hopeful book ("Exoplanets") I decided to descend to the depths of despair by reading Jane Mayer's "Dark Money"

"Dark Money" chronicles the rise of dark money raised by billionaire power players and the rise of the alt-right.  The book follows the evolution of billionaire corporate leaders over the decades as they try to alter politics to help maximize their profits.  Over decades their efforts exacerbate, if not actually create, the political polarization that exists today.

I think I knew about most of what was in the book but I have to admit that I never realized just how interconnected the different efforts were and how this interconnectedness mostly stems from the Koch brother's donor network.  From getting taxes cut to deregulation, from gerrymandering districts to voter suppression, from climate denialism to disseminating alternative facts, the Koch network - a bunch of oligarchs - meddles in it.

The book is a depressing read.  The length of time that this has been going on - decades - to the shear amount of political power that has been accumulated, you have to realize that this will take generations to fix ... If it is ever fixed.  Also maddening is the number of people in high government positions, including administration secretaries, that have been bought and payed for by the American oligarchs.  After finishing this book I truly doubt we actually live in a democracy today ... It is all just an illusion.

Everyone should read this book.  The tRump supporters should have it read to them.  I gave this book four stars on Goodreads.  I would have given it five stars but some of the writing was repetitive at times.

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